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This is an outstanding recipe with layers and layers of flavor. It's really easy to make and well worth the effort! I think it is important to use chicken breasts that have the skin on and bone in. It makes for a better tasting end result. This recipe comes from my Italian cooking class Chef-instructor. Cookbook source, unknown. Serving suggestion: Rice is the classic accompaniment with this braise.
- 6 chicken breast halves, skin on, bone in about 1/2 # each
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 yellow onions, thinly sliced
- 1 1⁄2 lbs white mushrooms, brushed clean
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded, deribbed, sliced thin
- 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded, deribbed, sliced thin
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1⁄2 cups dry red wine
- 28 ounces diced tomatoes with juice
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 3 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1⁄2 cup kalamata olive, pitted, sliced in half
- 3 cups cooked rice, 1/2 cup rice per person, cooked according to package directions, more if desired
- Rinse the chicken well and pat dry with paper towels.
- Season generously with salt and pepper on all sides.
- In a large frying pan over medium-high heat, heat 2 T olive oil.
- Working in batches to avoid overcrowding of the pan, add the chicken and brown on all (3) sides, 3-5 minutes per side. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. NOTE: Properly browned & seared chicken ensures that the red wine will not seep into the chicken and discolor the breast meat.
- Add the remaining 2 T of olive oil.
- Add the onions and saute' until softened and lightly browned, about 5 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms and bell peppers and saute' until slightly softened, 3-4 minutes longer.
- Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute longer.
- Pour the red wine into the pan. Bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.
- Add the tomatoes with their juices, tomato paste, parsley, basil and oregano.
- Season with salt and pepper if desired.
- Reduce the heat to med-low and simmer until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Add the reserved chicken along with any accumulated juices back into the pan. Cover and braise, reduce heat to the lowest setting & simmer gently until the chicken is cooked through and opaque in color. About 20 minutes. I usually flip the breast over to ensure that the meat is cook through & through. NOTE: depending on the size of the breasts, this may take longer. Do not cover, the sauce will turn out very watery. If it becomes too thick, you need to add a bit some chicken stock or water.
- Add the vinegar and olives. Cook until the olives are heated through, about 3 minutes.
- Taste and adjust seasoning.
- At this point I like to debone & remove the skin to make it easier to eat at the table.
- Serve in warmed shallow bowls over white rice. Enjoy.